Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Day Thus Far.

6:45 am : Small child climbs in to bed for a snuggle. Sweet. Realise small child smells like pee. Get out of bed, clean child, strip child's bed, start laundry. Bring small child back to my bed for promised snuggle.

 7:00 am : Get out of bed. Turn on light in children's room and wake up not-quite-as-small child. Get told off by NQAS child because she was "finishing a dream." Come back five minutes later to find door closed, light off, and NQAS child back in bed. Take her blanket.

7:15 am : Listen to small child tell off Husband because she wanted both her pieces of toast at the same time. Be glad that it is not me being told off.

7:30 am : Get told off by NQAS child because we had replaced the toothbrush she dropped on the bathroom floor the night before with a shiny new one. Note to self: clean the freaking bathroom floor more often.

7:45 am : Get children clothing for the day. Make NQAS child's lunch. Pack backpack.

7:55 am : Put laundry in the dryer.

 8:00 am : Realise I should probably eat too.

8:30 am : Try and get small child into day's clothes. Confiscate laundry basket. Confiscate soccer ball. Confiscate crayons. Take beloved Blankie hostage. Get small child into day's clothes. Return Blankie unharmed.

8:45 am : Realise that NQAS child has been in the bathroom for an awfully long time. Discover NQAS child in bathroom, trying to "wish [her] old, good, toothbrush into existence".*

8:50 am : Get everyone's shoes and coats on. Grab the stroller in hopes we will not be late for school. Convince small child to ride in the stroller by pointing out that flowers don't have feet, and thus cannot walk.**

9:00 am : Drop NQAS child at school, with hugs and kisses all around. For the first time this week, there has been no screaming and yelling.

9:04 am : Take advantage of small child's seeming good will and bribe her with a marshmallow to let me push her around the neighbourhood in the stroller for a bit.

9:45 am : Set up child in front of Blue's Clues with a snack so that I can have a shower. For the first time this week. Don't judge me.

9:48 am : Get out of the shower, reassure myself that all that yelling was stupid Blue and her friends.

9: 50 am : Finish rinsing hair. Get out. Fold laundry. Get bored and check my email instead. Play Castleville. Surf Pinterest. Realise that I haven't written a blog post since we lost the house, and that maybe I'm a little sad about the whole thing. Try and think of something decent to write about. Fail. Go back to Pinterest.

10:00 am : Decide that maybe I should actually get dressed. Find out that my only clean pair of pants has a mystery stain on the butt. Put pajamas back on. Watch Blue's Clues.

11:00 am : Make lunch. Get up eight times to get small child a spoon, a fork, more water, a bib, some carrots, etc. 

12:00 pm : Get back on Pinterest. Check my email again, just in case anything truly fascinating has been sent to me in the past couple of hours. There hasn't. Try to think of something decent to write about. Fail.

12:53 pm: Promise readers that my next post will be more interesting, or at least shorter. Or maybe just a picture of a cute baby seal.

1:03 pm : Hit publish on strange post about my day thus far.

*The exact same toothbrush, except for a slightly different picture. And yes, when I asked her what she was doing, that is what she told me.
**Kee insists on wearing a pink poncho with a flower hood. Every day. Regardless of temperature or imminent downpour.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Home Inspections: A VERY Good Idea.

Today, we went up to the house for the home inspection. When we were dropping Kee off with my mum, she asked me what they could find in the home inspection that would make us not take the house. I jokingly replied, "well, if they find a hellmouth, that would probably be a deal-breaker."

It turns out that an attic full of black mold and completely wonky electrical might do it too.

The really crappy thing is that I still love the house, and I worry that we won't be able to find anything that suits our needs quite so well (minus, of course, the toxic creeping poison and the danger of catching fire in the night) somewhere else.

We're going to see if they will drop the price so that we could afford to take care of those little problems but, considering what we had to go through to make a deal in the first place, I'm not holding my breath.

So, back to tromping through strangers' houses, critiquing the closet space and poorly planned outlet placement. Wheeeeee!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Games People Play.

I'm pretty sure that I've mentioned before how most children's board games make me want to poke my eyes out with a spoon. Especially if they're geared to three and four year olds (I'm looking at you, Candyland.) or have anything to do with Dora.

Uno has made the cut, and so have Yahtzee junior and Connect Four, but other than that, there aren't many out there that I would play voluntarily.

This week, my daughter came home with an egg carton math game, that's all about adding, and is actually kind of innovative if not actually fun*. But that's not the important part. The important part is that it reminded me of a game that I used to play when I was a kid; that actually is fun!

Allow me to introduce you (if you're not already familiar) to the game of "Awari".

The rules are simple, and the materials are super easy to find; all you need is an egg carton and thirty-six of something. Seriously; dried beans, marbles, small rocks, little glass blobby things.

(Now, I didn't actually read all the way through the rules in the link up there, but they look a little complicated, so I'll tell you the version that I taught Beege.)


1. Each cup starts with 3 beans/whatevers.
2. Each player gets one side of the board. Their "home" is at the end of the board on their right side.
3. On each player's turn, they choose one of the cups on their side of the board and scoop out the beans. Drop one bean into each of the next cups, dropping one in your "home" pile if you pass it.
4. If you land in your "home" pile with your final bean, you start your turn again, choosing another cup. If your final bean lands in a cup containing any beans, you scoop them all up and continue. If your final bean lands in an empty cup, your turn ends.
5. The game is over when one player's side is completely empty.
6. The winner is the one with the most beans in their "home" pile.

See? Easy!

Not only is it educational (counting, adding, taking turns, following rules), but it's kind of relaxing. Zen even.

Plus, it's good for your humility to get your ass handed to you by a six year old when playing a game. (Not that she has yet, but it's just a matter of time; the kid is sharp.)

Aren't they shiny?

*For me, it's not fun. For Beege, it's fun and educational.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

We Put in an Offer.

We went last night to see the house that just came up on the market. It was the same layout as the original house that I fell in love with, but with some upgrades; that were all done very badly. So we decided to put in an offer on the first house.

Please note: I am breathing into a paper bag, not huffing paint.

And now we wait.

Monday, April 9, 2012

My Head Hurts.

We've been a little preoccupied around here lately, with the whole house thing; we all seem to be handling it in different ways though.

I pace a lot, and blurt things like "well, we NEED two bathrooms" and "closet space is important" to no one in particular. Husband is spending a lot of time playing video games, and being infuriatingly mellow. The kids have started playing a new game that they call "house ladies".

One of them shows the other one several "houses" (ie. corners with pillows in them, under the beds, and behind the couch), and then the other picks one and pays the house lady with empty plastic Easter eggs. Right now, they are living side by side in "semi-detached bungalows" (aka: the couch).

If only we could pay for a house in plastic eggs.

So. There was a house that we liked - that had issues - but we went back and saw it a third time. We still liked it, and my dad (who is a very handy guy) says that all of the issues are totally fixable. We decided to put in an offer.

But, of course - Easter weekend - we couldn't do anything until today.

We got an email last night with a new listing. A listing down the street from "our" house. Listed for the same price, but with a lot of the things that we want to do to our house already done.

So. Instead of putting in an offer first thing this morning, we are going up to look at this other house down the street. Which is probably just going to confuse me.

Also? I think I have strep throat.

If I was a drinker, I'd be drinking.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Holy Crap.

So. We're going to put an offer in on a house. If you'll excuse me, I must go for a long walk before I pace a hole in my floor. Please enjoy this soothing picture of yarn.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Sew Much For That.

I love to sew. I am a maker of things. Most of the things I make (that invlolve sewing), I sew by hand; and every once in a while, as I'm squinting at the tiny stitches I've been making for the past hour and a half, I wonder why.

Then, I vow to get some more use out of my sewing machine. It's perfectly lovely, easy to use, and I have SO MANY THINGS that I want to make. Surely, it would go faster if I hauled out the machine, right?

Step 1: Unearth the machine. This often involves moving things from in front of the shelf. Boxes, bags, laundry baskets... that sort of thing. Then I've got to remove the books, bags, notebooks, balls of wool, and other assorted things I don't want the children to get that have been stuffed in around the machine. Now, I've got the machine out.

Step 2: Find somewhere to sew. I don't want the girls to end up with pins in their feet, or tripping over the cord stretched across the room to the only usable outlet; so the obvious choice of dining table is out. I could go upstairs and use my grandma's table; but I don't really feel like carrying the machine up the stairs. I suppose I could use a card table and a folding chair in the bedroom, but that's a whole extra pain in my butt.

So I end up doing this:

After a while of sewing, hunched over the machine, with my knee lodged in my ear so that I can use the foot pedal, I remember why it is that I don't use the machine more often. Which brings me to...

Step 3: Bury the machine again.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

She Doesn't.

Remember how the other day I was wondering how Beege could sleep on top of the pile of assorted crap that she hoards in her bed? Well, now I know.

Her new sleeping arrangements, with her doll "Bucky" from moxy + toots.

Last night, rather than sleep on her pile of crap, she burrowed in a corner with her blanket and the new doll she bought herself at the One of a Kind show this weekend.

Monday, April 2, 2012

This Sucks.

Well, sadly, that house was not the house for me.

We went to have another look over the weekend with our real estate agent, who listed all the problems with the house. There were grading issues, and mustiness issues, and poor outdoor maintenance issues. There were electrical issues. He actually told us that it would require a tonne of work and be a total money pit. Obviously, not the best deal.

He took us around to a number of other houses, all of which were perfectly nice, but had yards the size of postage stamps. Or basements with only one tiny window that looked out onto corrugated metal. Or didn't have a fenced backyard. And I didn't get the same feeling from them; I didn't start arranging my furniture in my mind.

In short, they just weren't for us.

We're still looking, and I can see that this is going to be a longer process than I thought. Of course, I may have had unrealistic expectations, considering that both my sister and my parents bought the first house they looked at. Which is, apparently, not what usually happens. Still, I'm discouraged.

And, unfortunately, I can see my dreams of a big backyard and a craft room/office going up in smoke.

While we're looking, I've decided to start getting rid of stuff, in preparation for the (eventual) move. I'm pretty sure I've mentioned that we've always had a lot of stuff. And the situation has gotten worse since we've had kids, because as anyone blessed with children knows, they come with A LOT of stuff.

It appears that they've also inherited the "keep everything" gene from somewhere or other. It's amazing, the crap I find in Beege's backpack and shoved under her pillow. Bread bag tags, rocks, sticks, scraps of paper, rubber bands, broken toys, bits of string... you name it, she's probably got it.

I have no idea how she can sleep on top of stacks of books.

Better to start the culling now, rather than face temper tantrums while packing up and making the (proposed) move even more stressful.

Also better to behave as though I think that we'll be moving sometime in the near future, than as though I think we'll never find the right house. Right?